Tears of joy

By JAMES PARKER  |  November 28, 2006

I hadn’t quite hoisted it in that this kid has a terrible stammer. Another demonstration of Ice-T’s pedagogic sensitivity: to the boy with the verbal blockage he gives the job of scratching, cutting, jamming, and rearranging the flow of sound. Perfect. After the PE show Phil, panting with happiness, said he felt “like a clam” that had opened up to reveal a pearl inside. Here’s to Season Two.

The hour-long finale of Making the Team: Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders, by contrast, was soporific: long before the halfway mark my eyes crossed and I fell mewing into the couch cushions. But I did stay awake long enough to record one final kiss-off speech from DCC director Kelli Finglass as she made a last-minute cut to the squad. When demolishing the dreams of a young woman, Finglass, an embittered ex-cheerleader, tends to speak with a particular nasality, as if the sinuses were the seat of her great antipathy: “Candice, we’ve kind of been on the fence back-and-forth with your potential here. What seems to be consistent is, in May we said, ‘Need more power,’ in June we said, ‘Need more power,’ and now it’s July and you still need more power. The bottom line is, you’re not powerful enough.”

Zzzzz . . . When I regained consciousness, the girls — pride-congested, smiles like rhinestones — were out in the geometric wilderness of Texas Stadium, hoofing it for the crowd. Triumph, big music, end of series, blah. The ads, as you’d expect, were for trucks and pills. (So concludes my brief education in slimming gimmicks and pre-menstrual dysphoric disorder.)

And as for the damn Monastery, which also concluded this week, I missed it. Not being in the proper state of pious readiness, I failed to anticipate the possibility that the program might be scheduled five hours earlier than its regular time slot. (Nice one, TLC.) Now someone’s going to have to tell me what happened. Did any of the four remaining “guests” at the Monastery of Christ in the Desert in New Mexico, at the end of their 40-day-and-40-night sojourn under the rule of St. Benedict, decide to pack in the secular life and become a monk? I must know. Please contact me through the usual channels.

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